Development of the Integrated Patient Information System for the Geriatric Day Hospital at the QEII
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The internship was completed at the Geriatric Medicine Research Unit in the Veteran’s Memorial Building in Halifax. The internship work was performed from June 1st to August 31st, 2008. The internship objective was to design and develop two modules in a relational database that would track the patients’ function and mobility. Information was gathered though staff meetings, observing work flow and surveys to gather the team’s thoughts and ideas about how to create these modules that are user friendly and complimentary to their current workflow and processes. During the course of the internship, a major problem arose in trying to separate the data into logical modules. Shadowing GDH team members found a large area of redundancy when collecting patient data. However once addressed, the issue was solved by looking deeper into what data was needed and how the Integrated Patient Information System could help. Once each team member had solidified the data they needed to collect and the data they needed access to, it became clear that using an online central repository would solve the issues. This report outlines how the requirements were gathered and merged, how the module construction began and hurdles that were encountered and dealt with. The report will first provide an overview of the Geriatric Day Hospital (GDH) and the Geriatric Medicine Research Unit (GMRU). It then outlines specifically how the internship related to Health Informatics and suggestions for improving the data collection and knowledge sharing in Geriatric Medicine in the QEII are included at the end. The internship performed at the GMRU was a valuable learning experience that allowed the author to apply the knowledge and skills obtained through the Master of Health Informatics program. Being immersed in such an environment not only stimulated critical thinking and ideas, it gave the author the opportunity to put skills learned to the test to develop effective solutions for issues around health information and data. The Integrated Patient Information System will continue to grow as more modules are designed and the author has begun collecting lessons learned from previous construction of modules. The GDH team has taken a solid and iii dedicated investment in the tool, continue to be open to change and have worked very hard at identifying their processes and workflows to create structured requirements for each module.